Quality issues in higher education system in India

Source: The Indian Express

Syllabus: GS-2- Education

Context: Delhi University’s high cut-offs in admissions is not a reflection of standards as there is no connection between one’s intellectual ability and performance in examinations.

Comment on the current education system.

  • Rote learning and exaggerated marks point out the lack of pedagogic imagination and show a highly mechanised process of entering the higher education.
  • This trend for marks converts a learner into a smart consumer and the only skill she/he acquires is the ability to memorise associated bullet points as emphasised by exam-oriented teachers and coaching centre gurus.
  • The path of success is causing the stigma of failure as the “fact-centric”/“objective”/short questions become the new normal, it becomes very difficult not to get at least 80 per cent in the board examination.
  • Social Darwinism(Survival of the fittest) is normalised and hyper-competitiveness becomes the philosophy of the age as schools become highly-oppressive institutions.

Do the students find enough guidance?

Young students hardly find any guidance as they choose their subjects and enter colleges.

  • Academic disciplines are ranked through the market rationality and young students are regularly pressured by the anxiety-ridden parents.
  • They are driven by the peer culture, as a result, they tend to prefer “prestigious” subjects like Physics, Economics, Commerce, English literature and Psychology, even if they are not naturally inclined to these subjects.
  • colleges and universities are hierarchized due to the ranking system. The students select the college keeping in mind the “brand consciousness” instead of the subject of their liking.

Way forward

  • We should acquire the courage to accept that one’s curiosity, aptitude and awakened intelligence cannot be measured through a pattern of examination that compels one to be a robotic performer rather than a creative wanderer.
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